Lately I have been having various experiences and conversations which have led me to thinking a lot about vulnerability. What is it to be vulnerable? Is vulnerability a weakness or a strength? To what extent should I be vulnerable? What does society say about vulnerability? Should I conform to society’s opinions or should I take my own path? Will my relationships be better if I am vulnerable? Is the ability of people to be vulnerable with me a reflection on my personality?
Vulnerability in my definition is the ability to be raw. It is the courage to open up and let people see who you are quirks and all. It is the ability to stand out and say, “Hey! This is me, this is what hurts me, this is what makes me tick, this is my weakness, this is my strength.” As much as we are made to believe otherwise, vulnerability does not only have a place in our personal relationships. It also has a place in the workplace.
Let us also think about what vulnerability looks like for the different genders. Generally, men are expected to be macho, to be strong and so to say to feel nothing. If they stray from this, they are perceived to be weak and spineless. What about the ladies? We are encouraged to be emotional i.e. to speak by all means, but not too much. It is frowned upon to over express yourself because you will be branded a nag. So what do we use as an outlet? Where does one direct all these feelings?
In order to improve my interactions and become a better person with less hangups, it is imperative to get answers to all these questions. I am taking a journey to discover these things and one of the books that was recommended to me was ‘Daring Greatly’ By Rene Brown. It is a book that one of my colleagues told me will tear me down, strip me naked then slowly begin to build me back. Well, as scary as that sounds, I am intrigued by the prospect of being stripped off my baggage and finding that new vulnerability sweet spot.